Post Reply Recommendations for Gaming novice
One Punch Mod
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Posted 10/30/15
I use the word novice, but given how long ago it was that I played anything that wasn't solitaire or a match-3 type game on a mobile device, we might as well say "not-especially-clever alien from another world where there are no video games."

So, let's assume this not-especially-clever alien acquired a PS3 almost two years ago, and after blundering about a couple of times, never turned it on again.

Let's also assume that this not-especially-clever alien finally has a couple of weeks to devote to exploring this thing you humans call console games, the goal of which is to have fun and maybe get hooked a little.

This alien is actually not interested in actual human contact during this exploratory period, so games that are just the player and the game are a must.

What PS3 games would you recommend as a good starting point in terms of:

-Learning how to use the damned controller for navigating and doing stuff in a game
-Getting accustomed to basic game mechanics
-Being reasonably clear (especially at the beginning of game) what you need to do next
-Not relying on speed or fancy combos (at least not in the lower levels)
-Having clear end/win point, and clear points where something has been accomplished throughout the game. (Zen-like playing and playing and playing won't be motivating enough at this stage.)

It's okay if they seemed geared toward younger children -- at least for picking up basics (obviously that probably won't satisfy me content-wise for long though.)

Basically, games that include some kind of tutorial to getting started would be great.

Prefer not to have to go shopping for physical media,

Also, do you know of any good beginner resources out there?

tl;dr - I'm like your foolish elderly great aunt wanting to see what this gaming thing those young folks are doing is all about. Humor me with some baby-step recommendations (you can laugh behind my back though).
Posted 10/30/15
Bioshock is pretty forgiving on Easy Mode. I'd also recommend the Last of Us and and the Portal series by Valve.
mnmike 
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Posted 10/30/15
-- I agree with PV about Portal 2 (Portal 1 is only available on Steam). Great puzzle game with some basic platformer elements, walks you through in baby steps, not a lot of twitch control required. Portal 2 stands alone pretty well--playing Portal 1 helps to understand some of the jokes, but is not necessary to understand what's going on.

-- Bioshock (the first one) has a great setting and story, and the action bits are pretty good. PV is right that Easy mode is pretty forgiving, but you will still die some. Bioshock 2 and Infinite are pretty good too, but start at the beginning.

-- Valkyria Chronicles has a great story and interesting gameplay, and is also pretty easy on the easiest setting. It's also got an anime feel to it, which you'll probably feel comfortable with.

-- Final Fantasy IV, VI and VII, re all available for PS3 on the PSN: all are great games, as is Chrono Trigger. These are turn-based RPGs; you have plenty of time to sit back and make decisions, and they all have fun stories.

-- Mass Effect might also be a good place to start. It's also an RPG, but it does have some FPS-like mechanics--but it's extremely forgiving on the easiest difficulty settings. Also, great story and universe.
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Posted 10/30/15
You might enjoy Journey: It is rather minimalist, not giving you a whole lot of guidance beyond the basic controls and a vague goal (Mountain, go!). However, it's very forgiving: the gameplay itself is simple, and you can't actually lose. You aren't timed and can't die, so you're free to take as much time as you need to solve the puzzles and muddle along toward the end of the game. The graphics/music are nice, and the story is fairly powerful. Smaller download as well, for what that is worth.

Portal is a good choice. Can't say much about the console version as I've never tried it, but it's an excellent puzzle-solving series with a rather amusing antagonist. Has clearer goals and is much more structured than Journey, especially in the beginning. Definitely harder in the end though.

The Last of Us has a great story.. but might be frustrating for a novice. I can't recall how forgiving it was on easier difficulties (or if it even had difficulties). Definitely worth trying eventually, but probably not as your first game.
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Posted 10/30/15
Why not try the Telltale games, The walking Dead and The Wolf Among Us. They are really easy to play, really engaging, aimed towards adults and the mechanics are as simple as can be. They're basically visual novels with a bit more gameplay and most importantly, they're great games.
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Posted 10/30/15
The above recommendations are good. RPGs can be quite a bit of fun for novices, especially if you play in "Story" or "Easy" mode. And I also highly recommend Telltale games.

You should also check out some of the independent games. These are often geared to people like yourself. I'd suggest:
- Braid
- Limbo
- Flower
- Journey


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Posted 11/8/15
Thanks everyone!

My two-week vacation starts next weekend, so I'll be checking some of these out starting then! Feel free to make additional suggestions or to register agreement with what someone else has suggested.
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Posted 11/8/15
AC Revelations or Black Flag. Very accessible & noob-friendly.
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Posted 11/8/15
If you like horror ...
any of the Resident Evil games

If you like rpgs ...
any of the "Tales of" games
any of the Atelier games
any of the Final Fantasy games (as suggested above)

If you like sci-fi ...
The Doctor Who Games

The classic franchises are still some of the best things out there .
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It doesn't matter.
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Posted 11/9/15
turn based is always easy to control.
Pokemon is a strong contender in that area.
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Posted 12/6/15 , edited 12/6/15
Belated thanks everyone for your suggestions. I tried all of the games suggested (or some version of) that I could get a free demo of, or access via free trial on PS Now, or my paid-for but unused PS Plus subscription. So, about 9 of the 15 games suggested.

PV, you were pretty much spot on with Bioshock. Easy Mode was very good in term of letting me learn the controls, was very clear about goals, had some real pretty parts, enough of a story to keep my interest, and I think when I have a bit more time, I'll spend a little more time with it. (There was one particular spot that I got a bit stuck at, but I'm hopeful that if I come back to it again, and try a couple of more times I'll be able to move on. I wouldn't have minded a bit less of killing things (I'm more of a thinker than a doer), but generally a good experience.

I also enjoyed Limbo, and found it easy to have patience with figuring out what to do (which was not very difficult as far as I got), and with dying repeatedly in attempts to get the timing and actions just right to avoid deaths (which I found rather amusing actually).

Flower was more aimless than I was looking for, but I can see it's calming appeal and did let it suck some of my time away. While it didn't meet my needs for this "project" it's something I might come back to later when I'm in that sort of chilling out mood.

Mass Effect 2 (because that's what I had access to, and not the first Mass Effect) seemed like a possibility. I need to give it more time though.

I really wanted to try Portal 2, but hesitated because there was no free demo or anything. I wouldn't mind hearing more about it--I might risk the 19.99 with a little persuasion (someone compared Portal to Journey--which I did try and which seemed a little too vague to start with and I didn't really progress far enough to figure much out.)
mnmike 
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Posted 12/6/15 , edited 12/6/15
In the first Portal, your character wakes up in a lab, and is run through a series of "experiments" using a portal gun. Basically, left click fires an orange door; right click fires a blue door. Walk through the orange door and come out of the blue, and vice versa. Then you are given a series of increasingly difficult tasks to accomplish, all while being guided by an Artificial Intelligence (named GLaDOS) that increasingly seems to want you dead.

In Portal 2, you wake up in the same facility, although it has clearly seen better days. Now you must navigate through the facility to escape from it guided by a different AI, this one named Wheatley, and in the process you uncover the history of the facility and the company that used to run it.

In each case, you step into an area and have to figure out how to cross to the other side, using your portal gun. At the beginning it is simple: make a door in the wall next to you, make a door across the room, and step through. Sometimes you need to figure out how to move blocks to activate switches, or to use the portals to get lasers to shoot the appropriate directions. Sometimes you have to jump through portals at some speed, so that your momentum can carry you past obstacles. You get the idea.

The stories are clever, the humor is top-notch, and the puzzles are interesting. The games are a little on the short side: Portal 1 takes about 4-5 hours on your first run through (less if you are really good at puzzles); Portal 2 is maybe twice that long. But there is some replayability, and they are just a heck of a lot of fun.
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